Cleethorpes Antics And The Soul Mastermind 2010 Quiz
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 19 June 2010 ·
It really is a privilege to be able to write this Blog entry, because it's about the 18th Cleethorpes Weekender, and it was the 18th Cleethorpes Weekender that I've attended, and it was one of the best !
As usual, Johnny Weston was my travelling companion for the journey up the Motorway, and as usual, he was an hour late picking me up, but knowing John's timekeeping, I'd allowed an extra hour when we agreed the time anyway. A trouble free journey saw us arrive at the gates of the Beachcomber at around 2.30pm. A rather poignant moment for me simply because Margie wasn't going to be here this year. She's attended 15 of the previous 17 weekenders, and really loved coming to Cleethorpes. Sadly there's nothing I can do to change this, but I, and I'm sure several others, raised a glass in her memory over the weekend. I'd also like to say thanks to all the kind people who enquired how I was over the weekend.
Having set the stall up it was time for the first beer of the weekend. Duly bought, and part consumed, the door from the record bar to the pool was opened so that we could sit in the sun, have a cigarette, and just chat. This was a cue for the Bar Manager to appear and give us a bollocking because you couldn't sit on the poolside of the fencing when the pool wasn't open, and as there was no life guard on duty the pool wasn't open ! Now I understand the need for Health & Safety regulations, but it's not as though we were going swimming ! (The problem was solved later by Mick the Security Supervisor who erected a couple of fences which separated the smokers from the pool.)
So we retired to the bar, only to be given another bollocking by the same Bar Manager for going outside for a smoke without a plastic glass ! The event hadn't actually started yet, and I'd been told off twice !!! Lucky she didn't catch me with the donation from the toilet roll suppler, who shall remain nameless
The talk before the event had been about the lack of caravans on the Beachcomber site itself, with Ady having to block book a load of caravans on Thorpe Park next door for the DJs and staff. To my joy, and the gnashing of teeth from Jenny Banks and Mick Smith, who I was standing with, discovered that I was booked in on the Beachcomber site, and not only that, but we had four keys to the caravan. The down side of course being that we had to give Johnny Boy a key of his own. However, as John Mills had wimped out of the Weekender it meant we had a spare bed, so Johnny Fingers was offered accommodation for the weekend.
As I had been booked to do the opening spot of the weekender it was time to be sensible and get something to eat, so it was off to the chip shop, and then back to the caravan to get changed.
A mixture of Oldies, R & B, and just stuff that I'd bought recently seemed to go down rather well, and that was the first spot over with. The rest of the evening was spent chatting with mates, drinking, trying to sell a few records, drinking, laughing at Lou Woods, who entered the dancing competition at least three times despite not getting through any of the various rounds, drinking, and occasionally, more drinking. As usual, I had the best intentions of pacing myself and going to bed early on the Friday night, so the reports of me being seen at 6.20am with a full pint are probably untrue, but as I have no recollections after about 4.00am I'm unable to categorically deny them.
Saturday morning arrived, and I remembered why we had offered Johnny Fingers accommodation, he had brought coffee with him ! Several cups of coffee later it was time to go and open up the stall. Business had been reasonable Friday night, but this afternoon it was slow, still it meant I had time to listen to the line up of International DJs, starting with Kenny from Outer Mongolia, via Tottenham, and Jessica from Wales, via New York. (You have to understand Ady's mentality to understand that bit !). Jenny Banks kindly provided me with a really nice ham cob to keep me going, so it was just a case of having a laugh with mates again, and the occasional drink, until 5pm when I thought I'd better get something to eat before the match.
Hmm choices, shall I watch the match in the caravan, or in the bar ? For once, I took the sensible option and watched the match in the caravan, with a few cans. The elation of the early goal soon turned to ashes following the most basic of goalkeeping errors. Johnny Weston rolled up just before the end of the game. It was the first time I'd seen him since Friday teatime, turns out he'd been lodging in Mick H's caravan, eating whatever was offered and minesweeping all the half empty glasses of booze !
Saturday night. Originally Tobi Lark / Legend was supposed to be the live act, but kept messing Ady about, so when she cancelled he moved swiftly and acquired the services of Spencer and Percy Wiggins. As soon as I saw the new live acts I thought it was the better deal, and how right I was.
Percy was on first, and although his voice was pleasant, there was always a lighter edge to his performance. Spencer Wiggins though....Wow, he roared, screamed, pleaded, cajoled, and just tore the roof off with a top class Southern / Deep Soul performance the like of which the stage at Cleethorpes has never seen before. Truly brilliant.
I packed the stall up shortly after the live acts and wandered upstairs to where Tef was holding court with about twenty DJs all playing five records each. Sadly, as mentioned by other people, the sound system just didn't do it justice, so by 5am I was back downstairs for another hour, and then eventually staggered off to bed around 6am.
Sunday, my favourite day of the weekend, although sometimes you get the feeling of relief that it's not another allnighter. Opened the stall up at midday, and struggled to get the first pint down me for a while. Jenny Banks turned up with another couple of cobs, so once I'd eaten them I was feeling in fine fettle and ready for a few more beers. This was possibly not the best tactic bearing in mind that Roger and I still had the quiz to present, but never mind.
The usual chaos ensued, with fourteen out of the twenty forms given out being returned, I've listed all the questions below, with the answers, so you can have a look at the heights on Soul knowledge we trawled this year. The funniest thing of all though, was whilst Ady was giving out the proper prizes, Roger and I were giving out our own prizes that we had found behind the stage. Third place got a broken wheelchair (Which in fairness to Jessica, she actually took back to her seat, admittedly with a slightly puzzled look on her face), Second Place got a Fishing Plaque, and the winners got a Golf Plaque. Again both teams took their prize away with them, I just wish I could have seen their faces when they realised what they had been given.
Next job was to pack the stall away in a thunderstorm, and then meander over to the pub for a cavery meal.
We said our goodbyes to Woody & Lou at this point because they both had work on the Monday, and then I went to get showered and changed ready for the Sunday night.
Sunday night is traditionally the night off for the record dealers, and those of us who stay make the most of it. I DJ'ed for the first two hours, double decking with Mick H, and then went and sat with the Rugby crowd for the rest of the night. Much alcohol was consumed (Well there's a change), and apart from a failed attempt in the Ritual DJ Humiliation (Which was musical chairs again) have very little recollection of the rest of the night. Suffice to say, I had a great time and staggered off into the night at 3am when the lights eventually came on.
Ady, you managed to provide a blinding weekends entertainment, so my thanks to you and all those who worked with you.
Finally, I can only echo the sentiments expressed by others; This was one of the best weekenders in quite a few years. I want to thank all the friends who spoke with me, laughed with me, even those who laughed at me, and drank with me. Your company lifted my mood, and whilst other Weekenders may be great, ensured that Cleethorpes is still SPECIAL.
So here are the quiz questions and answers:
Cleethorpes Soul Mastermind Quiz 2010
Q1: Name two labels that when you put the names together you come up with a '70s aftershave
A1: Hai (Hi) - Karate
Q2:: Percy & Spencer Wiggins started singing in a family Gospel; group. What was the name of the group
A2: New Rival Gospel Singers
Q3: The MGM logo is associated with the lion. On MGM demos a cartoon lion holds a record, but what three items of clothing is he wearing ?
A3: Jacket, Shirt, Tie
Q4: Shout, the label, is being shouted by what animal ?
Q5: How many releases did Spencer Wiggins have on the Goldwax label
a) 0, b) 5, c) 8
Q6: How many releases did Percy Wiggins have on the Goldwax label ?
a) 0, b) 5, c) 8
Q7: Which cities were these labels based in
a) Arctic, b) Boom, c) Home Of The Blues, d) Ru-Jac
A7: a) Philadelphia, b) New York, c) Memphis, d) Baltimore
Q8: Name a label featuring a horse on the label ? Possible 10+
A8: Bronco, Mustang, Stallion, Bareback, Derby City, Colt, Charger, Crazy Horse, etc
1 Point for each correct answer
Q9: What label features a peacock on it's logo ?
Q10: Two classic early Chicago labels feature a falcon on the logo, what are they ?
A10: Falcon, Abner
Q11: On this day, June 13th, in 1960, Clyde McPhatter signed for Mercury Records. Which group was he a member of on Atlantic Records ?
A11: The Drifters
Q12: Name the authors of these two books:
a) Northern Soul Stories, b) Groovesville USA
A12: a) Neil Rushton, b) Keith Rylatt
Q13: Which famous New York label features a clown on it's logo ?
Prompt: Kent released 3 Cds on this label
Q14: What is the best selling drink at the weekender ?
A14: Draught lager
Q15: Name two labels that Johnny Sayles recorded for ?
A15: Any two from: Mar-V-Lus, Chi-Town, Minit, St Lawrence, Chess, Dakar, Brunswick, DHC, New Sound
Q16: How many singles on the Big Wheel label were The Falcons the named artist ?
A16: Seven as the Falcons, One as backing vocals on Sandy Hollis
Q17: Who is going to win the world cup ? As far as I'm concerned there is only one correct answer !
Q18: How many toilet rolls are used over the weekend in the ladies and gents in the main building
A18: 36 / 40
Q19: What is this artist's real name, and who is it ?
(Play Little Charles & The Sidewinders)
A19: Charles Walker
Q20: What is the average quiz score at the weekender ?
As a footnote, literally, Sian from Rugby is notorious for leaving shoes behind at venues, so it was no surprise to get a phone call on the Monday morning asking if I would go and ask in the venue about a pair of shoes she had left in there. So I go straight away (I was in the cafe having breakfast when she rang), but it's all locked up with no sign of life. Being the kind hearted soul that I am, I try again as we are leaving, and it's still all locked up.
Good thing too really, I get a text off Sian in the afternoon "Found my shoes in the car" !
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 30 November 2009 ·
As I haven't done a blog for a while I thought I'd round up all the November events I attended in one, and it's been quite a busy month.
6th November - The Quality Hotel, Dudley
As well as being a generally good night, this was Lou's Birthday, so we were all set to have a fine time. The guest DJs for the night were the Sleepless Night's residents over from Dublin. Sadly one couldn't make it because of a death in the family, but it still meant Danny Duggan and Jimmy Mac came over to do the honours.
Col Kidson and I started the night off double decking, and I managed to give a couple of unreleased tracks that Ady Croasdell has given me a spin, followed by Lou and Woody. Then Danny and Jimmy took over for the next two hours, with the last spot being Col, Danny and me. Throughout the night the music was quality with Oldies mixed in with unknowns. A good attendance kept the dancefloor busy as well.
Funny story of the night concerns Danny Duggan of course. At the end of the night Woody and Lou found Danny trying to hitch a lift to Birmingham airport, limping along because he'd lost the heel off one of his shoes. After some degree of arguing Danny was eventually persuaded to go back to Woody's for a few hours sleep and then Woody would drive him to the airport (They were already taking Jimmy and his wife.) Danny get's in the car, and within seconds falls fast asleep. So fast asleep that he couldn't be woken up at Woody's house, so they left him in the car.
Three hours later Woody goes out to check on him, and he's gone ! A quick phone call reveals that Danny is already at Birmingham airport, having woken up, wandered off down the round, and found two blokes just getting in their car, who he persuaded to give him a lift to the airport.
Only Danny could manage it though. Imagine the scenario; you wake up in a car, having no idea where you are, so you get out and start to walk, well limp, down the road carrying your records. By chance you meet two blokes just getting in their car, and ask them for a lift. Not only do they say yes, they actually take you to the airport ! Talk about luck of the Irish, and Danny isn't even Irish !
The next one is 4th February 2010.
7th November - Six Hills Allnighter
A last minute booking made at Lifeline the week before, but I was well pleased because I was going to attend anyway. Sam Moore is the promoter, and I have to say, you always know you are going to get what it says ion the tin with Sam. A Northern Soul allnighter ! More predominantly Oldies than the Friday night, but that's not a criticism because the DJs managed to play some stuff I hadn't heard in years. I managed to get some good R & B in, and kept the dancefloor busy even though they wouldn't have known the records before. I also managed to get the J J Barnes unreleased track in again. I actually spent most of the night chatting with Harry Crosby, who had driven down with his wife Di. Quite a few beers were consumed and it was a good night all round.
The next one will be early next year sometime.
14th November - Rugby Soul Club Allnighter
Always one of my favourite niters because I always have such a good time. First spot I did was up against Karl Hurd in the Freestyle room, so I just played an hour's banging Oldies and had a full floor all through the hour. Last spot of the night fell to me as usual, so that one was considerably more adventurous. As always, the last record of the night was played to a full floor, with all the lights on.
Then it was back to Sian and Dean's house for a couple more beers, and to plan a re-enactment of the Benny Hill chase through the park. If you want to know more about that you'll have to attend the Taste Of Honey alldayer on December 20th (But Jo Brock has already promised to be the girl wearing a bikini !)
Next one is February 13th, 2010
21st November - Maxims Allnighter, Wigan
Well I PM'd Andy McCabe to ask him to save me a table for my sales stuff and he offered me a spot. Being the shy retiring type, I of course said yes immediately. I arranged my train times so that I could pop into Beatin' Rhythm in Manchester on the way, and then met Geoff and Sue Claxton in the pub in Wigan at 6pm. After a few pints, around 8pm, there was a little disagreement as to whether we should walk to the venue or get a taxi (Bearing in mind I had all my sales stuff and my DJ box with me, and Geoff didn't) which I won because I was paying for the taxi anyway !
Up the stairs and set up the stall. It was a very slow start to the night though, and I began to wonder whether many would turn up. However, over the next two hours a trickle of people turned into a veritable flood, and there were very good numbers in by midnight.
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed myself, this was the best Maxims I've attended, music, company, and sales were all top notch.
Next one is December 27th, 2009
28th November - United Sound Of Soul, Walsall
Although I attended nearly all the USOS at Holmes Chapel, and had managed the one in Cannock and the one in Blackheath I'd never managed to get to the ones at the Royal Hotel in Walsall because I always seemed to be DJing somewhere else. In fact this date clashed with the 100 Club, which I usually attend. However, I didn't have a lift to London which meant the first train back on the Sunday morning was at 9.00am. The problem of course is that the 100 Club finishes at 6am these days, and three hours hanging about on a station in November is not my idea of fun. So, the option of some good music at an event that went on until 4am, and was 20 minutes from home looked far more attractive to me.
Margie was driving tonight so we collected Woody and Lou and arrived just before 8pm. I'd reserved a table for my sales stuff which was a good job really because there were a lot more people selling than I expected (more than the promoters did as well because they had to set another three tables up). Considering it was an 8pm start, which I've always considered early, there were loads of people arriving right from the start and by 9.30pm the place was getting really full. Lot's of travellers as well, from as far afield as Yorkshire, Lancashire, Derbyshire, and a fair few from down south as well.
Musically I thought Chris Jone's spot was an absolute treat. From someone who I hadn't heard of as a DJ until the last couple of months each time I've heard him play he's done a belter. Ken Onions was not far behind either ! Although the night ran until 4 am, we left around 2 am, so I was tucked up in bed by 2.30, having had a really enjoyable night.
Next one is January 16th, 2010.
So there you go, a quick round up of the two Soul nights and three allnighters that I attended in November 2009. Roll on December !
Chuck Jackson Is The Boss !
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 14 October 2009
Prestatyn, Oct, 2009
It's Tuesday morning, and I have 'weekender flu'. You know what I mean, ache all over, headache, tired, irritable, but was it worth it ?
Oh Yes !
I'd never been to the October Legends of Motown weekender before, but as soon as Margie saw it was Chuck Jackson (Or Jack Chuckson as he was referred to in certain circles all weekend) she said "We're going". Who am I to argue !
Arrived on the Thursday in time to unload the car and sort everything out then off to the welcome do with the artists. John Poole had kindly arranged an invite for us, so we sat with Jenny and Roger Banks, had a really nice meal, pointed out that the menu said 'Mowtown' (But all credit to Pontins, they quickly changed all the menus), and had quite a few beers courtesy of Pontins. The real nice thing was that Margie actually got to meet Chuck Jackson, sit and chat with him, and even a kiss.
You learn something everyday though. Did you know that 'Tats' Taylor is actually related to King Edward of the Jersey Royals, and his ancestors come from the little village of Maris Piper. No ? Well neither did I. It's a good job that Jenny Banks explained it all for me.
A few more beers in the main room, saying hellos to people we hadn't seen for a while and then it was off to bed.
This time, for the first time ever at a weekender, I hadn't taken a sales stall. It's my one criticism of Prestatyn, that the sales stalls are too expensive, at over £100 per table it means that I have to sell an awful lot of records just to break even. Significantly there were more stalls selling T-shirts, mugs, teapots, cards, and even a stall that was just selling second hand clothes with no connection to Soul music at all, than stalls selling records !
Although I didn't have a stall, we still needed a base for the weekend, so big thanks to Keith Minshull at this point because he rearranged his stall so that I could put my single row box of sales on it. It was the right decision not to have a stall though because I only sold two records all weekend for a grand total of £40.
Friday night was pretty much Oldies all night, with sadly, the same records being repeated several times. Surely the DJs can at least spend time in the room before their spot and listen to what has already been played !
Into the Commercial Soul Arena to watch Angelo Starr and The Team. I didn't really know what to expect because the last time I saw the group they were backing Edwin Starr, and were a really tight band. They still are, and Angelo turned in a really good vocal performance of the right choice of songs for the room. A few more beers and then it was off to bed.
Saturday was pretty much the same as most Saturday's at the weekender. Oh yeah, there was something a little bit special Saturday night........
Probably the best show I have seen in the last ten years. Mr Chuck Jackson, live on stage. He was absolutely the business. Backed by Angelo Starr and The Team, if you turned your back on the stage you could have been listening to a record. I could go on and on until I ran out of superlatives; The power, the emotion is still there, to a degree that puts to shame all of the current chart acts I have the misfortune to hear these days. Margie had managed to get right to the front, centre stage, and filmed the whole show. We've just watched it again, and I still can't believe how good it was.
Strangely, whilst I was watching the show a woman tapped me on the shoulder and said
"Who's that ?"
I said "You what ???"
"Who's that ?"
Somewhat astounded I said "Are you taking the piss ?"
She said "No, who is he"
"Well, it's Jack Chuckson"
Sorry but I couldn't resist !
Sadly no photos of Chuck Jackson on stage because Margie had all the cameras, and by the time I realised there were so many at the front of the stage I just couldn't get through to her.
A few more beers, and then it was time for me to DJ at 4am. Now I'd had quite a few, well, a lot of beers, and what appeared to be a quadruple vodka courtesy of Keith Money, by this time, so am totally unable to produce a playlist. I know it went ok though because people danced through the set and I was even told by a couple of people on the Sunday that it was the best set of the night (Unless Keith Money had been buying them vodka as well !!)
Sunday morning. I felt like death. It had been my fourth allnighter in two weekends (Plus a Thursday Soul night). It took several beers for me to regain some semblance of normality. I had a chat with Mark Fletcher about Chuck Jackson's show, and he agreed that whoever they get next year will have to go some to beat that show.
Sunday tea time I had another DJ spot to do. I'd been chatting to Sean Chapman earlier in the day and he commented that Sunday afternoon's should be Beat Ballads only, just so that there is a change in the tempo over the weekend. I agreed with him. So between the hours of 6pm and 7pm it became Beat ballads and Midtempo only.
A real nice treat for me was that Kenny Hamber came onto the stage chatting before my spot started, and was still there when I introduced my first record;
"The gentleman sitting to my right on the stage is Mr Kenny Hamber, and so is this !" At which point I hit the start button on 'Anything You Want'
(Kenny Hamber is on the left of the photo)
Geoff Claxton had been taking the mick about my decision to play all Beat Ballads, so thank you to the gentleman who came across whilst I was chatting to Geoff after the spot finished, and said how much he'd enjoyed the spot. Vindicated !
So, onto the last session, Sunday night in the pub. And what a session it turned out to be. Mick H and Mick Bolderson had already left, so Keith Money did three and a half hours, with a little help from Pete Hulatt. Keith's always been one of my favourite DJs, so it was a great way to finish the weekend off
Four allnighters and two Soul nights in ten days meant both Margie and I needed some sleep by now, so we went round the rooms saying goodbye to people and sloped off to bed about midnight.
It's been a great fortnight, topped off by that awe inspiring performance by Chuck Jackson. So, if you spoke to us, laughed with us, drank with us, ate with us, or just enjoyed your self at the same place as us, thanks for the company.
Ken And His Plastic Sack Suitcase On Tour In France
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 07 October 2009
Margie and I set off for Rugby just after lunch on the Thursday to meet up with Sian and Dean, Phil, and Matt. We arrived in good time to find Sian issuing orders to all and sundry, I'm sure a complete stranger who just happened to walk past was instructed to put a case in the car ! Amazingly, we were ready to leave on schedule, so set off for London to collect Back Door Kenny in Tottenham. Ken being Ken, pops out of the door carrying his clothes in a plastic sack as his suitcase.
No problems getting into London, but of course the M25 was a virtual carpark on the way back out to get down to Portsmouth. A little bit of rally driving from Sian for the last hour got us to the Ferry just in time to board almost straight away (Because everyone else was already on board !
Find the cabin, dump the stuff, and do what all sensible people do, go and have a meal. (Ha, you thought I was going to say go to the bar didn't you !), then we went to the bar. It was about 8.30pm and the 'live entertainment' in the bar had already started. Dear God, a poor vocal duo, a very bad magician followed by a pub singer. It meant Margie went to bed almost immediately, and I of course went back to the bar. Despite the cabin having bunk beds, and you needed to be a dwarf to not bang your head if you are in the top bunk, I slept quite well. The Ferry docked on time and we left with no problem (In fact I didn't even notice where the Customs people were, we just appeared to drive straight out into France.).
I was going to try and write this part of the blog in French, but have had to admit defeat, so I'll just carry on in English. We drove for an hour or so with Sian leading the way because her satnav spoke French so it knew where we were going and eventually stopped for coffee in a charming little town called Pontivy. Having first visited a Patisserie so that Ken could indulge his passion for French bread, and Margie and Sian could get cakes, we wandered round the town looking for a cafÃÆ’© to have a coffee. As the ladies of the group were making all the decisions we ended up an hour later at the first cafÃÆ’© we saw, and discovered that the waitress was English !
Another hour's drive saw us arrive at the site. It was a very clean, modern campsite with chalets that have got Prestatyn, and even the new caravans at Cleethorpes, beaten hands down. Really good accommodation that we couldn't find any fault with at all. We even found our Weekender programs, the weekender CD, and a free bottle of the local cider waiting for us. (By the way, we had four CDs, so if anyone wants a copy just PM me)
By now it was almost 10 pm, when the first allnighter started, so off we set, to discover we are the first ones there, we were quickly followed through the door by Suzanne, her sister and brother in law, and Paddy and Liz. So the first people to arrive in the venue, and at the bar were the twelve English (I'm including Phil Shields as English to save having to write one Northern Irish every time) people on the site ! Mind you, it was free beer for the DJs, and the locally brewed beer was called Britt !
Tanguy and Loren, who were the promoters DJ'ed for the first two hours and to my immense delight showed that the R & B side of things was popular in France. Then Phil Shields did his first spot, followed by Lionel Girard from Paris. It was now midnight and the place had started to fill up. Matt Smart followed Lionel, to be followed by me. Then came Christophe Bidaud, a guy I'd never met or heard of before. But he played a fantastic set that was really unexpected. Phil, Lionel, me, then Loren and Tanguy finished the night off.
Overall the music was top quality throughout the night. All of the French DJs played some big records, and could all DJ as well (But none of them used the mike). Sixties almost exclusively with a decent mixture of R & B to Oldies, rarities, and even quite a few unknowns. It did make me wonder whether most of the dancers actually knew any of the records they were dancing to, but hey, what the hell does that matter as long as they are dancing.
Talking of which, there was some highly imaginative dancing by the French. Certainly not what you would see over here. Talking to one of the French dancers on the Saturday, she explained that Northern Soul wasn't really part of their culture, it's part of English culture, so dancing to Northern Soul in an English way wasn't part of their culture either.
Guess who the last dozen people to leave the venue were when it finished at 6am !
Saturday morning arrived late, so we decided to all go out for the afternoon. In France, a country with a long history of culture, fashion, and food, guess where we went ? Wherever you thought of, you were wrong. We went to a record fair ! Kenny had been given his pink bucket and spade (He wanted to go to the beach as well), so wandered round the record fair with the spade, said he was crate diggin'. On the way back he came up with a really surreal comment...
Ken "It's weird where the wheels are on this van"
Margie "What one at each corner"
A quick stop at a patisserie so that Ken could stock up on fresh bread and we were back in time for the afternoon session.
DJs for the afternoon were Ken and Andrew 'Paddy' Hadfield, originally from Wigan. Ken played his usual eclectic mixture of things ranging from R & B to the odd bit of Seventies and Crossover, Paddy played a really well put together set of Crossover
Sian decided to do some display dancing, and show them how it was done, well actually she was just dancing until we encouraged her a little bit. Little did she know Margie was also filming. The results can be seen below. She couldn't understand why we were laughing hysterically until she sat down and was shown the video. I'm sure I'll pay for this at some stage in the future, but it was worth it.
We wandered off around 7pm to get something to eat, wash and change, and were back in the venue by 10.15pm. And yes, the first dozen people in the place were all English again.
It was the same DJ line up as Friday, but with the addition of Philippe Lezineaud for one spot, and again the music was top quality all night. I've been to allnighters in the UK that haven't come anywhere near the quality of things played both Friday and Saturday, and all off original vinyl as well, so all credit to Loren, Tanguy, Lionel, Christophe, and Philippe.
It was on the Saturday night that the only down note of the whole weekend crept in, and it was down to a half dozen French who were to say the least, pissed. It wasn't that they were deliberately causing trouble, but they were on the dancefloor all through the early part of the night, bumping into people, deliberately on occasion, and to the point where a couple of people were actually knocked over. OK, it wasn't an English dancefloor, so English dancefloor etiquette didn't apply, but it became a little annoying, both to us, and to the French who did want to dance properly. Fortunately by 2am, most of them had burnt out and left the floor to the proper dancers.
Margie wanted to leave at 5am, but I gather the last ones to leave the venue all had UK accents !
We weren't leaving the site until the Monday, so had the whole of the Sunday free to do some sight seeing. Off we went to the nearest city, Concarneau, and the 'Closed City'. It was a walled fort that stretched out into the sea from the rest of the city, full of quaint little tourist trap shops. One of these in particular sold every type of sweet and chocolate you could imagine, they even had sculptures made of chocolate in the most exacting detail. We were really shocked though when Sian suggested licking part of the anatomy of one to see if it tasted of sugar.......I thought she was a good Catholic girl who didn't do things like that !
Back to the site, via a patisserie for Ken, and then onto a local bar where we stocked up on beer for the evening. As we had to leave at 4.30am for the ferry it was quite a restrained evening with virtually everyone in bed by 10.30pm. The torrential rain started at about 2am and woke every one of us up. Now you wouldn't have thought that would be much of a problem, except the campsite had a barrier with a code to get on and off, and the power was turned off between 11pm and 7am, so the car and van were parked outside the barrier, which was about a quarter mile from the chalets !
Margie came up with the solution, we 'borrowed' the sun shade umbrellas from the chalets to get to the cars whilst we loaded the records and the last of our stuff up. So if the campsite owners are wondering where the sunshade left leaning against the venue door is from, it's out of G11 !
What must have been a quite stressful drive for Sian and Phil, pitch black, pouring rain, and the wrong side of the road, was successfully undertaken and we arrived at St Malo in plenty time for the ferry. We had Sian and Dean, and Margie and me in our van, which meant Phil, Kenny, and Matt were in the car. Now we sailed through the French customs no problem, but didn't see Phil come through and had visions of them being stopped and searched. Phil's car in bits on the side of the road, Kenny arrested for kicking off when they put the rubber gloves on for the body search, and Matt claiming that Phil and Kenny were gay and his parents ! As it turned out they had been stopped and asked a few questions, but they asked at Kenny's side of the car and his dulcet Barnsley tones just confused them. Apparently they asked where they had been, and the only answer Kenny could come up with was "campsite", so they let them through anyway.
Onto the Ferry, and it actually sailed ten minutes early, a quick breakfast and then do what all good non-driving people do, we retired to the bar. We were sitting outside in the smoking area when Kenny decided to brag that he would be home before everyone else. It was as he leaned back with a smug expression on his face that the plastic chair he was sitting in decided to just collapse under him with a load bang. Cue helpless laughter from me and Matt made even worse when we realised that Kenny couldn't get back up again. It really was one of those moments where you laugh so much your face hurts, even the other people on the deck were howling with laughter.
The live entertainment on the way back was even worse. There were so few people in the bar that the first group only did one song and cleared off, they didn't do the quiz, which just left the pub singer. He slaughtered a few songs then wandered over to us to "have a chat with the lads in the corner" . I'm sure our mixture of accents confused him, after all there was Kenny with a strong Yorkshire accent, me from Lancashire, Phil from Belfast, and Matt from Rugby. He tried to get a laugh from the rest of the 'crowd' at our expense, and then said "If anyone wants to take the mike feel free". So I did. I took the mike and walked straight out of the bar (It was a good thirty yards) and left it on a window cill and walked back in without it. He wasn't quite sure what to do, but eventually realised I wasn't going to go back for it, so had to admit defeat and slunk off to fetch the mike. He didn't bother us again after that !
Straight through Customs again, and then an easy run back to Rugby where Margie and I swapped cars and drove home.
We had a brilliant weekend, with loads of laughs. The company was great, and although I had a distinct feeling that I had swapped John Weston for Kenny, it wouldn't have been half as much fun without him. My thanks to 'Mummy' Sian for doing all the organising, it made a really nice change for me to be able to just sit back and enjoy the trip, and of course my thanks to Loren and Tanguy for inviting me. I hope I was what you were expecting !
So that's France ticked off the list, just really leaves Spain where I haven't DJ'ed in mainland Europe (Hint, hint)
Another day to recover and then it's off to Prestatyn for the weekend !
Cleethorpes, Radiation Poisonoing, And The Soul Mastermind 2009 Quiz
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 18 June 2009
My back hurts, my chest hurts, my head hurts, my knees hurt, my fingers won't hit the right keys on the keyboard, and I keep falling asleep.
I think I have radiation poisoning !
Then again, it is the Tuesday after the best weekender of them all. I do love allthe weekenders I attend and DJ at, but there is something special about Cleethorpes every year.
This year Johnny Weston and I set off about 11.00am and made steady progress at fifty miles an hour through all the roadworks on the M5, M6, M42, M1, M18, and M180. Believe me that's a lot of roadworks......and why do you never see a single person working when you are coned in for miles on end. Lazy gits, we were in a rush, this is Cleethorpes you know !
Arriving about 2.30pm,we unloaded all my sales stuff and went straight over the road to the pub for a few beers. Now last year, I left Johnny Weston in the pub whilst I went and booked in, twenty minutes later he'd been thrown out of the pub, so it was with some trepidation that I left him this year.
The lovely Sharon, and a big ugly fella called Dougie were dishing out keys and wristbands, and I happily received three keys which was great news. It also meant John had a new experience this year, his own key (We don't normally trust him with a key of his own for rather obvious reasons.) John and Viv Mills had arrived by then, so a few more beers, and then it was off round the corner to the chippy for some tea.
Arriving at our caravan I realised that John and Viv were two doors down with Woody and Lou, and Karen, Lindsay, Rachel, and Karen were in the next row. I do like it when there are people you know in caravans close by because it means you can go 'visiting' and have a beer at someone else's.
Lou was stomping about in her caravan, well I don't think you could actually call it stomping because Woody had forgotten to pack her shoes, so it was more of a soft shoe shuffle ! Viv Mills also managed to fall out of bed and cut her nose open quite badly. Apparently it was like a scene from a zombie movie with Viv staggering about with blood spurting out of her nose. Fortunately the alcohol numbed the pain, so she was fine later on.
I was down to DJ for the first spot of the night Friday, so having eaten, washed, and changed, I discovered that the campsite is a lot larger than you think, especially if you are carrying a DJ box. I'm not saying we were a long way from the venue, but next year I want some oxygen cylinders and a tent for my team of Sherpa's to set up a half way camp. I arrived at the decks just on time, and the sound system guys had almost got it all working, so I dropped the needle on the first record, and Cleethorpes XVII (That's 17 in English for the thick ones amongst us) had begun.
I have no recollection of what I played during that first hour, but it couldn't have been too bad because an hour later Keith Money arrived and I had a fairly full dancefloor to leave him. One thing I have noticed is that people seem to be leaving it later each year to come out at night (Or perhaps it was just becauseI was DJing !). I remember it's not that long ago that there would be queues waiting at the door ten minutes before opening.
I opened the sales stall then, and that's pretty much where I spent the rest of the night. I was quite shocked this year to see that not all the tables had been taken, but perhaps this was the right decision by those dealers, overall, sales this weekend were terrible, and it wasn't just me. All the dealers were saying that there was no money around for records, and people weren't even looking at records most of the night. In fact, I was the last dealer to pack up at 2.30am, everyone else had already gone. I spent a couple of hours chatting with Woody and Lindsay,then set off on the route march back to our caravan. It's a bit like orienteering getting back after a niter, you look for landmarks and sort of tick them off as you pass them. Still two miles later I was able to crawl into my bed and get some sleep.
Saturday morning arrived bright and sunny, and early ! A cup of tea then the trek back to the poolside cafÃÆ’© to eat my breakfast and then take Margie's back so she could eat it in bed.
The rest of the morning was spent chatting and drinking tea before Margie and Lou went off into town courtesy of Johnny Fingers to buy Lou some shoes. I opened the stall up, and sat back to listen to the International line up of DJs that Ady had laid on. Bit of a misnomer really, they may not be UK born, but more than one actually lives over here, and has done for years. There was some nice stuff played though.
A quickrun to the chippy, and then a slow walk back to the caravan finished my afternoon off.
We were joined in our caravan by Karen, Rachel and Lindsay shortly after because their caravan was hosting a party apparently, to which they hadn't been invited. Oops!
Saturday night seemed to have a slow start as well (So perhaps it wasn't my DJing !),but the numbers were definitely upon the previous night. Sales in the record bar weren't up though, and Steve Jeffries had already packed up and left.
Onto the two Davis's.Jesse was up first, and although I only knew a couple of tracks by him he soon proved himself to be a rather good singer of virtually anything he put his mind to on his first visit to the UK. Certainly a little bit more Jazzy than any previous live act, the crowd really enjoyed the set he performed.
Melvin Davis of course has been here on at least two previous occasions, so knew the score. He probably spent as much time chatting to the crowd as he did singing,and that's not meant in a derogatory way at all. In terms of singing, he did all his own 'Northern favourites', and possibly more interestingly sang half a dozen of the songs that he has written, but never recorded. His son Bryan also joined him on stage as well to perform a duet with Melvin. I know Bryan is a performer in his own right as well, so it would have been fun to give him a spot of his own and see how a hard core Northern audience reacted to some Detroit Hip Hop. An excellent performance by Melvin though, a consummate performer, who obviously enjoyed himself as much as the audience.
Within half an hour the room had emptied by about half the numbers. Perhaps it's an age thing, ah well, it just meant you could get served at the bar easier from my point of view. I lasted until about 4.30am again, having realised in previous years that I can't do the full allnighters and be back at Midday to open the stall up.
Cooked breakfast again at the cafÃÆ’©, and then back across to pen the stall again at Midday. Sundays are probably my favourite day at Cleethorpes now, you get some really good music played, this year by Kenny and Donna, the Banbury lads, and the Hinckley terrible twosome. Then it was time for the Soul Mastermind 2009 quiz.
Roger Banks and I host the quiz, having usually thought up the questions the week before. This year we were being sponsored by 'The Priory', the well known de-tox centre for the very rich (Well at least we had a bag full of pens that had been liberated from The Priory !! For the first time we actually gave out all the quiz sheets, and insisted that the entrants returned the pens with the answers. It was the usual format, twenty questions, sixteen about Soul music, and four that were vaguely related to the weekender. After last year's pretty poor showing, Roger and I actually gave away a fair number of the answers. It must have been easier this year because we got all the sheets back bar two. One of which was handed out to the Macc lads, and never returned (Strange because they have been previous winners on a couple of occasions), and one which I discovered later had been handed out to Margie and Lou, who couldn't answer any of the questions between them so gave up !
The eventual winners were a team called Paddy Power, represented by Michael from Germany. Go figure !
Roger and I left Ginger, and later Mick 'Acne' Smith (Acne because of the number of spots he had) to finish the afternoon off. I quickly packed the stall away and we went over the road to the pub cavery before it got busy. Woody and Lou were leaving about 6pm,so they brought the key to their caravan over to us. I suggested that we have a party in it and wreck it, but was promptly told off by Margie so that didn't happen.
Johnny Weston came onto form as we got back to our caravan. He'd been good all weekend, hadn't got drunk, hadn't lost the key to the caravan, and in fact had almost made it to the end of the weekend without any calamities ! Almost !!
Lou had told him there was a bottle of wine left in the fridge, so he borrowed the key to their caravan, and wandered off. Now remember I said that their caravan was only a couple down from ours.... You guessed it. He lost the key ! Then tried denying he had even been given it. Margie and I eventually found it, where he had dropped it, having climbed over the decking at Woody and Lou's caravan (God knows why because the key fitted the other door!). I made him climb back over the decking banister to retrieve it, what made it even funnier was when he eventually managed to get into the caravan, Lou had taken the wine with her anyway !
Sunday night. Mayhem calling. Roger and I had the first two hours to DJ, and Roger excelled himself this year. We normally fill the stage up with all the junk we can find backstage, originally because it used to confuse Ady as to where it had all appeared from. He sussed it was the two of us fairly quickly, so we now do it just for a laugh. This year though, Roger disappeared back stage and returned carrying a toilet, complete with seat ! God knows where he found it, I couldn't ask for laughing. What made me helpless with laughter was the fact that when I lifted the lid it quickly became apparent that the toilet hadn't been cleaned since it was removed from its original setting. It was manky to say the least !!! Fortunately we had some latex gloves (Don't ask) and Roger disappeared backstage to return with some antiseptic spray (Again, don't ask !)
I must admit I really enjoy double decking with Roger, and promoters must think we work well together because we are nearly always paired up at weekenders. Ady arrived in his fancy dress outfit, and asked me to lead him top the office to collect the prizes, he couldn't see too well with the teddy bear hood on. I led him through the room, and deliberately round a couple of tables. Do you know,it's the first time I've ever been called a bastard by a teddy bear ! Best of it was, we collected the prizes from the office, so Ady put his hood back on, and then promptly tripped over the office phone cable, dragging the phone off the desk !
We played a few tunes as the room filled up, and soon it was time for the fancy dress competition. A good range of entries this year, and all to be judged by the stars of the weekend, Melvin, Jesse, and Bryan. Now bearing in mind I hadn't seen or spoken to Melvin Davis since Prestatyn in 2004, he immediately recognised me, and had a quick chat whilst Dougie set the fancy dress in motion. I have to admit that Jesse Davis was looking somewhat bemused by this stage, perhaps it was the fancy dress, or the toilet on stage, or even the latex gloves we had stretched over all the empty pint glasses (And there were quite a few, we'd been DJing for two hours by this time !) whatever, they eventually made their decision, and prizes were handed out. Over to Keith Money for the next spot.
Eventually the Ritual DJ Humiliation competition had arrived. A nice easy one this year, Musical Statues. Mick H proved a worthy winner, eventually beating Bryan Davis(Try explaining that one away to your mates when you get back to Detroit..."Oh yeah,and I came second in the Musical Statues competition !"
A few more beers, well quite a lot really, and another year was over for me. All I had to do then was conquer the marathon trek back to our caravan, and sleep.
I said at the beginning of the blog that there is something special about Cleethorpes, this year was no different. I had a great time, again, and would like to add my thanks to Ady and all the crew who support him. It really is the highlight of the year as far as weekenders go.
2009 Cleethorpes Weekender
Soul Mastermind Quiz
1. This is the 17th Weekender here at Cleethorpes. What year was the first one held?
2. Name the Cities these labels were from: Ric-Tic Okeh Musette Red Bird
A. Detroit Chicago San Diego New York
3. Ady's guest acts this weekend are Melvin Davies and Jesse Davies.
Name 3 other Soul singers with the surname Davies.
A. Tyrone Davis Gwen Davies Larry Davies etc
4. What is the most popular colour for record labels?
5. Why is this the case?
A. Marketing/Psychology Bright Attractive Draws you to it Associated with good times Feel good factor
6. How many labels did this record come out on & name them? (Feminine Ingenuity)
A. Gold Token Take 6
7. Jackie Lee recorded under several names. What was the name he was born with?
A bonus point if you can give his middle name as well
A. Earl Lee Nelson
8. Name 3 Soul singers with the surname Smith?
A. Bobbie Smith George Smith Curtis Smith O C Smith Otis Smith Roy Smith etc.
9. How many times will Mick Smith DJ when he is sober this weekend
10. There is a new book about Ginger Taylor on sale at the weekender. Who wrote it?
A. Rob McKeever
11. Where was the record label D-Town located?
A. 2828 McGraw, Detroit & 9355 Yosemite, Detroit
12. Name 3 artists or groups who recorded on D-Town
A. Peps Cody Black Lee Rogers Lillian Dupree Jimmy Soul Clark Precisions Dee Edwards Buddy Lamp Jackie & The Tonettes
13. How many singles did James Carr release on the Goldwax label? Was it
14. Who owned the Old Town label?
A. Hy Weiss
15. Which town did Old Town refer to?
A. New York
16. How many caravans are there on site at the Beecholme?
17. What is the maximum occupancy/capacity of the site?
18. How many of the original line up of The Four Tops are still alive?
A. 1 - Abdul 'Duke' Fakir
19. What record label did most of Z Z Hill's 60's sides come out on?
20. Name 2 artists or groups whose name or surname begins with the letter Z?
A. Zodiacs Zircons Ben Zine Ray Zeiner Vinnie Zine Johnny Zamot Alpha Zoe
Rugby Does The Business......again !
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 12 April 2009 ·
I had a feeling this was going to be a good night. I was wrong, it was a great night !
There was an almost palpable sense of excitement building for this niter through the week before, mind you, that was just Sian ! Easter weekend is always a busy weekend on the Soul calendar, and true to form there were three allnighters on the Saturday (And two more on the Sunday). Fortunately it all dropped right for Rugby geographically and Burnley and Morecombe had little effect on the numbers. In fact it was probably the busiest one yet with lots of Rugby virgins popping their cherry, but more of that later.
Our evening started at the Avon Mill. We arrived to find Shirley Stewart nd Colin Wood already there with a couple of friends from Austrailia, so we made it eight Soulies in the place, and within five minutes of us arriving another couple walked in (But they weren't really there and we didn't see them, at least that's what they told me to say).
The place was packed with every table full of couples and families enjoying a meal and gentile conversation. It quickly become obvious that the two tables of Soulies were out to enjoy themselves because raucus laughter, shouting and swearing soon livened the place up. Just as we were finishing our meal Toby, Dave, Sue and Andy walked through the door. I sometimes wonder what people must think of us ! There were Yorkshire accents, Yorkshire accents with a twinge of Aussie, Lancashire accents, Black Country accents, and London ('Specially for Dave.....Cockney) accents all mixed together, and we obviously all knew each other. Just as Woody and I wre leaving to drop my sales stuff off at the Benn Hall we discovered Keith and Sandra Money with a couple of friends sitting in the bar, so they went round to the lounge and added some Scots to the mix.
Arriving at the Benn Hall I discovered Sian was so excited she couldn't keep still, especially as she was in obergrupenfuhrer mood and ordering everyone around as usual. She had managed to get the sound working in the bar this time as well, and the first thing the bar manager said to me was "It's going to be noisy in here tonight". I of course responded by ordering the beer in a very quite whisper, she had to laugh, but the look on her face said "smartarse !"
She was right as well, it did get noisy because the room filled up very quickly with the sound of Soulies haggling over records and just enjoying themselves.
Matt Smart did his usual first spot, and it was a blinder as well, he's really grown in confidence over the years at Rugby, and it's so nice to see him really enjoying himself behind the decks now.
I'd chained Keith Money's DJ box up with mine when we arrived, so fifteen minutes before his spot I disappeared outside for a smoke, leaving him to search for me so that he could get his record unlocked. Small minded, cheap, petty, of course, and so funny !
I've said before that Keith is one of my favourite DJs, and he didn't disappoint this time either, he had the floor full almost from the start, and left Johnny Fingers with a full floor. John did the business as well, and played an eclectic mix of sounds that went down a storm. As I started I asked everyone to give him a big round of applause because he couldn't do it himself. Then I was off and running.
I'd noticed that there hadn't been any R & B played so far at all, so strted off with a few from that side of the playbox, and it just sort of continued through the whole hour. Lots of biggies from the last five years, with a few lesswer known things thrown in. The dancers were up for it though, and the floor stayed full through the full hour.
Here's what I played between 11pm and Midnight.
Mickie Champion - What Good Am I - Musette
Don Gardner - My Baby Loves To Boogaloo - Tru Glo Town
Syl Johnson - Try Me - Twilight
Johnny Sayles - I Can't Get Enough - St Lawrence
Roy Wright - Hook Line & Sinker - Mica
Larry Davis - I've Been Hurt So Many Times - Kent
Delcos - Arabia - Ebony
Solomon Burke - Stupidity - Atlantic
Barbara Lynn - I'm A Good Woman - Tribe
Minnie Epperson - Grab Your Clothes - Peacock
Betty O'Brien - She'll Be Gone - Liberty
Ted Taylor - Somebody's Always Trying - Okeh
Bobby Bland - Shoes - Duke
Ike & Tina Turner - Dust My Broom - Tangerine
Louis Howard - Do As You Please - Charm
Invitations Watchg Out Little Gitl - MGM
Five Royales - Catch That Teardrop - Home Of The Blues
Big Daddy Rogers - I'm A Big Man - Midas
Beverley Ann Gibson - A Three Dollar Bill - Jubille
Patience Valentine - If You Don't Come - Sar
Betty Everett - I've Got A Claim On You - One-Derful
Harold Betters - Tell Girl - Gateway
Idols - Just A Little Bit More - Reveille
Adam and Mark Randle were following me. and I knew they would change it round and play some Seventies, some Crossover, and some Modern, which went down just as well as the R & B.
We popped into the Freestyle room at 3am to hear some of Pete Robinsons spot. He'd already said he was going to be doing a Jazz Funk spot, and that's what he did, the room was full nad the floor busy throughout again, even one or two people had brought whistles. I didn't see and jelly sandles or pyjamas thought !
Back into the main room to catch the end of Johnny Fingers second spot. Again, the business from John. Tony Edgley followed on with an Oldies spot that cranked the floor up nicely for me and the last spot of the night.
5am to 6am
Constellations - I Didn't Know How To - Gemini Star
Joanne Courcy - I Got The Power - Twirl
Enchantments - I'm In Love With Your Daughter - Faro
Vondells - Hey Girl - Airtown
Darrow Fletcher - The Pain Gets A Litte Deeper - Groovy
Satisfactions - Take It Or Leave It - Smash
Thelma Lindsey - Prepared To Love You - Magic City
Jack Montgomery - Baby Baby Take A Chance On Me - Revue
Tommy Dodson - Co-Operate - Main Sound
Frank Dell - He Broke Your Game Wide Open - Valise
Johnny K Killens - Frenchy The Tickler - Deep City
Larry Banks & Jaibi - My Life Is No Better - Unreleased GWP
Brooks Brothers - Lookin For A Woman - Tay
Clyde Allen - Lil Sister - Movin'
Cooperettes - Shing A Ling - Brunswick
Marge Dodson - Be Your Baby - Decca
Magnetics - I Have A Girl - Ra-Sel
Charles Lamont - I've Got To Keep Movin' - Challenge
Troy Dodds - Try My Love - El Camino
Andrea Henry - I Need You Like A Baby MGM
Ruby - Feminine Ingenuity - Gold Token
Fantastic Four - Can't Stop Looking For My Baby - Ric-Tic
Ray Pollard - The Drifter - United Artists
and the last one with the lights on, and a full floor right to the end.
Trends - Not Too Old Too Cry - ABC Paramount
In fact over half this spot were requests, but the one which made me laugh was when Mickey Cruise came and requested The Brooks Brothers, because it was already cued up as the next record !
So that was it, another allnighter over, but the music had been tremendous all night, and what a variety of sounds as well. Oldies, Newies, R & B, Sixties, Seventies, Modern, Jazz Funk, Crossover, uptempo, midtempo, you really did have the lot this time.
It just remains for me to thank all the dancers, the doorstaff for letting me carry on with an extra record, Sian and Dean for the organising, Denise for being there ! Margie, Woody and Lou, and all my other friends for the company, and finally Martin and Helen for the lift home.
I do know that Sian must have had a good night though, for the first time ever she forgot to thrust a huge packet of flyers on me ! I'm sure she'll manage it next time I see her.
PS Happy Birthday Clare !
On The Motorway
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 31 March 2009
As the ticking of the clock moved inexorably on, the tension was rising. The weather forecast was checked, the route planned and entered into the Satnav, and then it was time for the intrepid explorers to venture forth..........
It was Margie's first time to drive to a Soul venue ! Woody and Lou normally give us a lift, so we had been waiting for a venue that didn't involve Motorway driving so that Margie could return the favour, and of course it allowed Woody to have a drink.
The venue had arrived as well. United Sound Of Soul was originally based at Holmes Chapel, just off junction 18 of the M6. A move to The Oakley Country Club, in Brewood near Stafford meant it was a hell of a lot closer to us. Sadly, The Oakley closed it's doors two weeks before the scheduled 2nd Anniversary Soul night on the 28th March. Desperate searching for a new venue followed by Kev and Martyn, and they eventually settled on The Premier Suite in Cannock town centre. Which meant it was even closer, and could be reached easily without going on the Motorway.
So, at 4.30pm Margie and I set out to pick Woody and Lou up in Bilston, and then straight down the Cannock Road to meet Kev and Sharon Spittle in Cannock for a meal. We met them at the venue itself, so got an early view of the room.
Almost square, a bar in one corner, stage at the other end of the room, and a fairly small dancefloor in front of the stage. Large round tables scattered throughout the rest of the room. It looked fine to me, The Premier Suite is actually quite a smart building anyway, so that was just a bonus. Kev and Sharon Spittle were worried about the size of the dancefloor more than anything else, but as I pointed out, if the dancefloor is small, it will be full all night, and if people need more room they can always dance on the carpet.
We set off to the nearest Wetherspoon's pub, which handily was three doors down the street and the first surprise of the night awaited us when Ian and Denise Spittle (Kev's cousin) came into the pub to join us for the meal. Why is that a surprise I hear you ask ? Because they now live in Poole, and I don't think I've seen either of them since The Lea Manor at Albrighton shut down.
Suitably fed we wandered back round to the venue to get set up with the sales stuff just before they opened. Kev Bod was already there, playing records to himself, and as Sharon had gone to get changed, Lou started taking money on the door from the early arrivals.
The venue staff proved to be very helful at this point. I asked if they had another trestle type table available for me to set up on the wall next to the sockets for my light. Not only did they get me a table, they insisted on putting a table cloth on it, and then when none of the sockets worked, went straight off somewhere and sorted that out for me as well. In fact as more record dealers arrived, they set up more tables wherever they were needed. Top marks for customer service there !
Sharon arrived back to find a dozen people in the room already by ten past eight, she went round the room putting sweets on each table, and Margie followed her round nicking the lollies she liked off several tables.
It was obvious by eight thirty that it was going to be a busy one, people were arriving in a regular stream, not just locals either, there were a fair few travellers from all over the country. Perhaps more importantly, there were a lot of locals arriving as well. Some who I hadn't seen since the days of the Lea Manor, and some who, until recently, were regulars at Oldies events rather than Rare events.
And this was a Rare Soul event, make no mistake about that. Quality Soul music, with no played out Oldies in sight. Phil Threlfall followed Kev, to be shortly joined by his partner in crime Ian Cunliffe. Both from my original neck of the woods they dropped quality tune after quality tune between them and nicely set the stage for Jumping Joan. More rarities, and obscurities, and just down right good Soul records followed for the next forty minutes or so, and by the end of her set the floor was full.
Arthur fenn was next up and he changed the direction of the music slightly, and started to play a few '70s things. To a certain degree it thinned the floor out, but Arthur being the consummate DJ that he is soon rectified the gaps on the floor, and left Mick H a full floor.
The set of the night for me came from Mick. You know he's got the rare stuff, but he's also got some pretty nifty unknown stuff as well, and he's a good DJ with it, so the set flowed from beginning to end. By now, not only was the floor full up, but as I had said to Kev at the beginning of the night, people were dancing on the carpet, and it wasn't a problem.
That left it to Carl and Maria to finish the night off in good style, which of course they did.
It really was a great night, from the moment I walked into the room I felt comfortable there, there were lots of my friends from up and down the country in attendance, and the music was top notch.
If I had one complaint it would be about the bar prices, a little on the high side for my liking, but that's just me being a tight arse !
Our journey home was again a trip into the unknown. We went on the Motorway ! Margie has only been driving for a few months, and this was the first time she had been on the Motorway, so it was the ideal time, two thirty in the morning, and just long enough, three junctions. She did really well, and is gaining confidence all the time, soon she'll be giving me lifts to The 100 Club !!
Here's a couple of playlists from the night which really show the quality of the records being played.:
Wade Flemons - Two Of A Kind - Ramsel
Lee Tillman & Secrets - She's The One I Love - Whit
Sequins - Try My Love - Detroit Sound
Lovers - Without A Doubt - Frantic
Topics - Have Your Fun - Dream
Hayes Cotton - Love Plays Funny Games - Clare
Hayes Cotton - Black Wings Have My Angel - Resist
Sity & James - You Needn't Tell Me - Sprout
Tommy Turner - Lazy - El Bam
Billy Hines - Ling Ting Tong - Wa-Tusi
Lonette - Blue Jeans - M&S
Tropics - Hey You Little Girl - Topic
Imperial C's - Someone Tell Her - Phil La
Shaddows - Together Again - United Audio
Ty Karim - All At Once - Senator
Don & Juan - The Heartbreaking Truth - Mala
Versatones - With A Broken Heart - Magic City
Dynamics - Love To A Guy - Top Ten
Lillie Fields - Changes - Unissued Pied Piper
Gambrells - You Better Move - Carla
Sweets - Something About My Baby - Soultown
Stunners - Nobody But Me - Renfro
Joyce Taylor - What Can I Do - Wal-Ly
Servicemen - Connie - Chartmaker
Capitals - I Cant Deny That I Love You - Omen
Sonny Herman - What About Me - Utopia
Caressors - I Can't Stay Away - Ru-Jac
Honey & The Bees - Dynamite Exploded - Arctic
Paris - Sleepless Nights - Doc
Romona Collins - You've Been Cheating - Clarks
Little Dooley & The Fabulous Tears - You Twine So Fine - Baylor
Sammy Turner - Next In Line - Enjoy
Knights - I've Got The Feeling - USA
Monique - If You Love Me (Show Me) - Maurci
Jimmy Wallace - I'll Be Back - Alpha
George Jackson - Don't Use Me - Mercury
Moses Dillard & The Dynamic Showmen - I'll Pay The Price - Mark V
So, despite all the problems with venues, despite the worries about the small dancefloor, despite all the sexy young girls who got off the Fireman's bus and went into the room next to ours (Oh, perhaps that wasn't such a problem !), this was probably the busiest United Sound Of Soul so far, and for atmosphere and music the best I've attended so far. Congratulations to Kev, Sharon, and Martin, it was a great night, and showed that the West Midlands does still appreciate quality Soul music.
You can find a load of photos in Margie's album Here
When The Snow Lay All Around......it Was Soul Time !
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 01 January 2009
Well, December has probably been the busiest month I've had in a good few years Soul wise, six allnighters, and a Soul night, and it means I've not really had time to do any entries to the Blog for a while. So, here's a quick and condensed version of the last month of 2008.
Starting the month off was the best allnighter in the world, The 100 Club ! John Weston and I travelled down by train as usual, and met quite a few others at The Blue Posts for a warm up beer, or two. I have to recommend this boozer yet again, just round the back of The 100 Club, a Sam Smiths of Tadcaster brewery pub, it has to be the cheapest (and good) beer anywhere in central London.
Musically this was a good night with Ady and Butch doing the business as residents, and Ady and Colin from Hinckley being the pick of the guests for me, with Andy Dyson putting in a long overdue appearance as well.
The following Thursday saw Chris Anderton collecting me and meeting John Weston at home for the drive down to Stansted. It's the Nuremburg Weekender of course. This is the eleventh year I've done this weekender, and it's still getting better each year. We arrived on a snowy night at around 11.30 pm, to be met by the promoters, Osi and Dominic. Straight to the hotel where the hotel receptionist told us there were two rooms; a double and a single. Quick thinking by me led me to say straight away "I'm the single", and I grabbed the key, smirking. This left Chris and John with the double room. It got even funnier when they went to the room, because it was a double bed, rather than twin beds....Ohhh, did I laugh ? Yes I did. I've shared a caravan at Cleethorpes with John, and I'll tell you now, he snores ! Very loudly ! He also has problems with wind when he's been drinking !
Anyway, enough of that, we decided to attend to the more important things in life, and just dumped the bags in the room and set off to the pub. Finnegan's Irish pub was, again, to be our base for the weekend, and we managed a couple of beers before they closed at 1am. I have to admit, when we got back to the hotel, I slept like a log. Chris though, gave up trying to sleep around 3 am and packed his bag, went up to reception and booked a room for himself.
Now, I can't say I blame Chris for moving out, but the saga continued. The hotel was booked completely for the Friday and Saturday nights, so without Chris knowing, during the following morning they moved all of John's stuff into his new room, which at least had twin beds rather than a double. More of the hotel rooms later though.
By Midday, I'd had breakfast, wandered around the city for a while, bought a load of cheap tobacco, and was feeling thirsty. Finnegan's it was then. John and Chris came in within minutes of my arrival, and we settled down to have a few beers and await the arrival of some of our German friends. By 4.30pm, none of them had arrived, so I decided to go back to the hotel for a quick kip.
Chris and I met up back at Finnegan's around 9pm, no John though, he was still asleep. The venue was the same as it's always been, called K4, it's just across the road from the pub, so we wandered over just after 10pm to find it already quite busy. It's been a while now, so I can't remember what I played in any of my four spots, except the very first one was all R & B, which went down a storm. Suffice to say that the DJs had free beer all night, and you have no need to wonder why I can't remember what I played. John can't remember what he played either, mostly because he was still asleep and didn't turn up for his first spot ! He did arrive a little later though, and played a storming set in the Northern room.
By the time my second spot came around, at 3.30am, the place was heaving. Certainly as many as last year, and well in excess of 600 people, all willing to dance to almost everything that was played.
I stayed until just before the end, and then sneaked off to bed. Chris Anderton had already left, to try and get some sleep before John arrived back. So, somewhat to the annoyance of Chris (and the rest of the hotel) when John arrived back and couldn't get into the room he decided to bang and kick the door rather loudly.
I can now reveal that Chris feigned sleep in the hope that John would go away. It didn't happen though, John did go away, only to return with the Night Porter and a master key, so that was a plan that went wrong !
Saturday afternoon was fairly predictable I'm afraid. Finnegan's again ! But at least it was livened up by Chris recounting the tale of the night before. Then back to the hotel for a quick wash and change and then off to meet Osi and Dominic to go for a meal. All told about twenty of us went for the meal and we had to travel a couple of stops on the Metro to get to the restaurant owned by Stefan (Who also provided the excellent dark beer for all the DJs from his own brewery). Remember I said it had been snowing when we arrived in Nuremburg, well John decided that snowballs would be a good idea. We didn't quite think so.
The meal is always a bit of an adventure, because I don't speak German, and even though some of the Germans speak excellent English, the translation of a menu presents it's own unique problems. However, the recommendation was for the Pork and Dumplings, so that's what I had, and it was very nice too. On the way back to the Metro John again threw a few snowballs, so Chris just grabbed him and dumped him face down in the snow. Shame that the snow was melting and it was a piece of muddy ground underneath. He looked like a down and out ! When we arrived back, John went to get changed, fell asleep and promptly missed his first spot again. Chris and I were pleased to see that the venue was if anything busier than the night before, and yet again, the dancefloor was heaving.
John arrived late, mumbling something about not realising he was on early, and promptly disappeared again, just in time to miss his second spot of the night. You've got to give him credit for being consistent !
So, just before 4am I played my last record and thanked the crowd for dancing, and said what a great time I'd had, again, in Nuremburg. I must admit I was slightly taken aback by the cheer that went up (Or perhaps they were cheering because I'd finished my set !!!). Great people, great venue. Love it.
Chris had again left before John to try and get some sleep. John arrived back and went through the banging and kicking of the door routine, only for Chris to open the door and say "It wasn't locked".
A quiet Sunday, spent in Finnegan's and then a lift to the airport from Dominic. The flight was on time, and the drive home went smoothly, so I was in bed by just gone 1am on the Monday. Another weekender survived.
On the Thursday I paid for a twenty year 'want', and it wasn't even a record, it was a book. 'Duke / PeacockRecords; An Illustrated History With Discography' by Galen Gart and Roy C Ames had eluded me for nearly twenty years, and thanks to Richard Pack in Canada, I finally have a copy. What was even better was it arrived on the following Tuesday, which was five working days later, from Canada. Brilliant work by the PO I thought.
The following day I was off to the airport again, on the second leg of my European Tour 2008. This time, Margie and I met Woody and Lou at Birmingham airport for a flight to Dublin. It set the tone for the weekend when we discovered Scooby Doo was on the same flight..........
If you remember last year when we went to Dublin Lou was scared of flying and virtually assumed the crash position as soon as she got on the plane. She's got over it now, but still sat directly in front of me, so I went through the usual routine of shaking her seat quite violently as we took off. A few choice words later and we were off.
We were booked into The Belvedere Hotel, which is right above the venue used for Sleepless Nights, so pretty much just unpacked, had a quick wash and change, and then went down stairs to the bar. Now I remembered last time I was in Dublin I thought it was expensive, but this year, because of the exchange rate I discovered that it was horrendously expensive....4.60 Euros a pint ! That works out at almost £4.60 a pint. Ah what the hell, it's Christmas, hang the expense. Margie and I decided to have a meal called a 'Turkey Packet', and it was delicious, roast vegetables, covered in mashed potatoes, with a huge slice of ham, and one of turkey on the top, covered in gravy. Woody and Lou joined us, and a few of the Irish crowd had started arriving, so naturally a few more beers were consumed. Well, it would be rude not to, wouldn't it.
Downstairs for the advertised opening time (Because Lou was DJing first) and Danny Duggan was still setting the decks up. This is where the fun started because the decks are on quite a high stand, and Lou is, well, not to put too fine a point on it, short. We could just about see her head behind the decks. It didn't alter the fact that she did a great spot though, as did Woody a few hours later.
Pretty much the same as Nuremburg, I can't remember what I played, I've slept since then, and if I don't write the playlist down the next day I have no hope of remembering it. I do know that the floor seemed full enough of Irish Soulies to keep me happy, and that it was overall, another great night. We sneaked off to our room just before the end, and discovered that there was some after event entertainment arranged. Our room was on the front of the hotel, and we discovered we could lean out of the window and watch the drunks fighting in the street below. Great stuff !
As usual I was awake early, and bored, so I woke Margie up and told her it was time to get up. To her credit, she didn't tell me to bugger off, and actually got up, mind you, she knows I have the attention span of a small child if I'm bored, and would only have kept her awake fidgeting and moving around in the bedroom. So, we packed the case, left it at reception, and went round the corner to the nearest pub, where we knew from previous occasions we would get a really good breakfast.
I'd booked the flights for the four of us, and Lou had booked the hotel, so I was quite surprised to receive a call from Woody about an hour later asking if I could remember how much Lou had paid for the rooms. As it happens I could, so I said that she'd only paid an 8 Euro deposit. Which explained to Woody why the Hotel were insisting that both rooms still had to be paid for ! Profuse apologies from Lou, and we agreed to meet them in the pub for Lunch later.
A pleasant, liquid, lunch, then a flight back and then home to sleep. Another great weekend spent in Dublin, I can only say exactly the same as I did about Nuremburg; Great people, great venue. Love it.
Christmas had the temerity to intervene in the month's Souling then, but on Boxing Day it was off to Worcester for the Marrs Bar Allnighter.
Another great venue, that to be fair has never received the support it deserves. I don't know whether it's because it's in Worcester, which is off the North / South M6 route, or what, but tonight was no different. The numbers were low, very low. What disappointed me most is the line up was exceptionally strong, Lou Woods, Chrissie, Denise, Pete Robinson. John Weston, Nige Brown, Des Parker, Kenny Burrell, Roger Banks, Molly, and yours truly.
Unfortunately, by the time I DJ'ed, 4am to 5am, there were only about 25 people left in the venue, and some of them were locals who had turned up for a late drink. Never mind, perhaps the numbers will be up for the Easter one.
Saturday night was probably the main reason the numbers were down at The Marrs Bar, because it was the last Middleton allnighter of the year, and not only that, but the last Middleton allnighter at the old Civic Hall. The next one will be held in the brand new building just across the road, called The Middleton Arena by all accounts.
Anyway, I was up there early in time for a couple of pints in the pub across the road, and then it was back to set the record stall up on the balcony. I have to say it was a huge attendance, with people from all over the country turning up for this one, so it was nice to see so many friends out having a good time. As usual, Andy McCabe had booked all his resident DJs, and tried to get everyone who had guested over the year back as well, so there were over 40 DJs across the three rooms.
I was paired up with Roger Banks for an hour of double decking at 12.45am, and here's what I played as my contribution:
Joanne Courcy - I Got The Power - Twirl
Theresa Lyndsey - Prepared To Love You - Magic City
Larry Banks & Jaibi - My Life Is No Better - Unreleased GWP
Bobby Freeman - Swing Me - Unreleased Autumn
Johnny Robinson - Gone But Not Forgotten - Okeh
Frank Dell - He Broke Your Game Wide Open - Valise
Jack Montgomery - Baby Baby Take A Chance On Me - Revue
It was at this point that we had Robbo acting as cheerleader on the stage in front of the decks, I'm not saying he likes the tune, but he wasn't half giving it some !
Bettye Lavette - (Happiness Will Cost You) One Thin Dime - Unreleased Scepter
Magnetics - I Have A Girl - Ra-Sel
Hyperions - Why You Wanna Treat Me Like You Do - Chattahoochie
Troy Dodds - Try My Love - El Camino
Jimmy Wallace - I'll Be Back - Alpha
The final record we played was Jimmy Wallace, and although technically it was Roger's copy that was going round on the decks, we officially shared the last play because I had also got it pulled up in my DJ box to play as the last one, it was just so funny to see us both standing there with a copy in our hands.
A very busy night, with some great music played, that in fairness crossed the whole spectrum of what is now called Northern Soul, so a thoroughly good night was had by all.
I stayed right to the end again, and then Johnny Weston gave me a lift home.
That brings me to the last night of the year, New Years Eve, and as Woody was DJing at The Oakley Country Club Allnighter, that's where we went. Woody and Lou picked us up and off we went into the countryside near Wolverhampton. They had a discussion about who was going to drive back on the way, with both of them saying they weren't going to drive because they both wanted a drink. Margie and I just sat in the back keeping out of it !
I'd never been to this venue before so was pleasantly surprised to find it's really nice. Quite a lot of seating, a reasonable size dancefloor, and a reasonably priced bar. Which Woody put to good use, drinking three pints in the first hour, so that settled who was driving home ! Lou wasn't quite the happy little bunny she normally is !
It was fairly quiet when we arrived, and I would guess a good 50% of the crowd in were from down South, and by that I mean as far away as Essex, Letchworth, and even Bournemouth ! However, by the time Woody hit the decks it was filling up nicely and he managed to get the dancefloor moving. With it being New Year, I'd dressed a little bit smarter than usual, so Margie, Lou, Toby, and several others amused themselves by taking the mickey over the fact that I was wearing trousers not jeans. Ah well, if it kept them happy !
Several times I was asked what time I was DJing, and when I explained I wasn't DJing, or even selling records, a couple of people expressed surprise that I was there, I explained that I actually like the music, and don't only attend venues I'm DJing at, which in some quarters caused even more surprise (Not that I like the music, the fact that I attend venues I'm not DJing at)
Midnight arrived in a shower of party poppers kindly provided by the club, and all of a sudden it was 2009.
People kept on arriving right through the next couple of hours, especially as the Soul nights at Broadlanes and Alsager had finished around 1.30am, and by the time we left at around 3.30am the place was heaving with probably getting on for 200 people having a good time. There was also a Modern room, but I only ventured in there once, and I have to admit it was very quiet with only a couple of people dancing. I left quite quickly.
I certainly enjoyed myself at The Oakley nighter, and apparently Swoz is going to run the allnighters on a more regular basis, so I know we'll be back.
That just leaves me to say, Soul wise, 2008 was a great year. Some venues fell by the wayside, which wasn't a bad thing, certainly by the middle of the year it seemed that there were more venues than punters ! Other venues just carried on regardless, busy, booking good DJs, with good numbers through the doors, and some new venues came into their own. Sadly I said goodbye to the magazine version of Soulful Kinda Music after 19 years, but the website is still going strong, and I've got a couple of other projects planned for this year.
As I said, I've had a great year, so I'd just like to say thanks to Johnny Weston for the adventures, Woody and Lou for the company and lifts, all the promoters who booked me to DJ, and of course all the people who danced when I did DJ.
Finally, I want to say thanks to my wife Margie, she's put up with me for another year, and even attended a lot of venues herself this year, and that's a big part of what made it a good year. So from spending years out on my own whilst she stayed in looking after the two lads, I've now reached the stage where if Margie doesn't come out I miss her company, so I guess you'll see a lot more of us in 2009, especially as she's now passed her driving test !
Happy New Year everyone !
"it's Nothing Personal..........but......."
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 27 October 2008
It's ages since I did anything for my blog, so I thought I'd better pull my finger out and get typing. So, why's this one called "It's nothing personal". You'll have to wait and see on that !
Friday night I was booked to DJ at the Central Soul Club in Nottingham, and as Jellybean was also booked, and she lives about three miles from me, I scrounged a lift with her and Martin.
We arrived in Nottingham, and Martin found the venue first time, even though it did appear to be on an industrial site. That was possibly because it was on an industrial site. The Central Soul club is based in 'Bugman's Bar', which is the bar and function room at the Warhammer complex. Now in case you've never heard of Warhammer I can tell you that they are a company that make models for wargames, mostly set in a sort of Gothic future world, with lots of different tribes of fantasy figures (My two sons both dabbled at one time). So the venue itself was done out in a sort of medieval fashion with lots of dark wood, and a huge wooden chandelier handing from the ceiling.
A large bar, seating around the edge on a raised dias, and an area with better lighting for the record dealers, with a wooden dancefloor in the middle gives you the picture. For the smokers amongst us there was also a heated balcony.
I'd been looking forward to this night for a while because I've got lots of friends in Nottingham, some of whom I don't see very often, and they had said they were all going to turn out for the night. They did as well, first and foremost, Wilko turned up with Janet, and it was probably the first time I'd seen either of them for three years.
Andy Murfin was also there with Frank Giacobbe (Hope that's spelt right) both of whom I hadn't seen for a couple of years, and loads of other people that I see infrequently.
(Thanks to Martin for the photo)
There was even a contingent of about ten from the West Midlands as well.
So, how did the night go ? Well it was mostly Oldies, but not particularly played out Oldies, so all in all it was a rather enjoyable night. Rather than list my DJ spot, I thought I'd list Jellybean's, so here it is:
Tommy Neal - Going In To An Happening
Kim Weston - I'm Still Loving You
Ivorys - Please Stay
Garland Green - Ain't That Good Enough
O'jays - I'll Never Forget You
Mikki Farrow - Could It Be
Volumes - You Got It Baby
Olympics - I'll Do A Little Bit More
Patti & The Emblems - I'm Gonna Love You A Long Long Time
Karen Sue - Something's On My Mind
Constellations - I Didn't Know How To
Commands - Hey Its Love
Andrea Henry - I Need You Like A Baby
Fontella Bass - My Good Loving
Capitols - Don't Say Maybe Baby
Theresa Lindsey - I'll Bet You
Al Gardner - Sweet Baby
I played a mixture of things that I knew would fill the floor, with a few things I thought would be new to people, and it all worked because the dancefloor didn't empty at all.
So my thanks to the Central Soul Club for the booking and Martin and Helen for the lift.
Saturday morning was the first match in the Rugby League World Cup, so I was up early to watch England play Papua New Guinea. After a few scares, England emerged victorious, so that set the day off to a good start.
Saturday night was of course The 100 Club. So I met up with Woody and John Weston at Snow Hill station just before 5pm to get the train down to London.
We managed to get a group of seats together and as the train pulled out opened the first can of the day. The train stopped at Moor Street station, and you would think Christmas shopping had started early because it filled up completely with hoards of women laden down with multitudes of shopping bags. Fortunately the fourth seat of our table was taken by a rather attractive young girl. Eye candy for the journey I thought (Sexist I know, but she was pretty !) Across the aisle from me a lady of more advanced years started telling me how she had just had a fall and hurt her arm. I can see you are thinking what on earth is he waffling about ? Well it's only relevant when you hear what happened later.
Woody had only brought a couple of cans of lager with him, so was slightly miffed to say the least when John's carrier bag slid across the table and knocked his first can over. Not only did he manage to soak himself catching it, but he also soaked the table and splashed some on the eye candy.
Spilling beer ? It's just not the done thing is it ! It got worse though when John opened his next can. To say it was lively would be the understatement of the year ! I got some, Woody got some, the eye candy got some, and even the old dear across the aisle from me got some. Which was a real shame, because as I've already mentioned, she'd hurt her arm and couldn't even wipe it off.
We were almost at Warwick by this time, and the train emptied out a far bit, so that's when the eye candy moved seats, saying "I think I'll move over here, it's nothing personal, but........" I can't say I blame her really, especially as Woody promptly dropped his second can of lager all over the table !!
I was helpless with laughter by this point, and to be fair, so was the eye candy who had literally just moved seats.
We arrived in London without any further mishaps, and taxied it to The Blue Posts just round the corner from The 100 Club. I can't recommend this pub enough as a meeting point for a drink pre 100 Club. It's conveniently just round the corner, sells good quality Samuel Smiths beer, and a £1.86 a pint for bitter, is probably the cheapest pint anywhere in central London.
The Money's, The Toby's and quite a few others rolled up over the next couple of hours, (and it was nice to meet Andy and Lauren from Hitchen FC where I'm DJing on the 29th November, (Plug plug) and then it was time to drink up and move on to The 100 Club
Although the 100 Club started an hour later than usual (at 11pm) the clocks went back at 2am, so there was an extra hour tacked onto the end. It was a good job as well because I wouldn't have wanted to miss any of the spots played by the DJ's. I think musically it was probably the best night of the year for me, and a few others judging by the Event Lookbacks on Soul-Source.
Residents Butch, Keith, and Ady all played excellent spots, mixing rarities with unknowns, with unreleased things, and the odd Oldie, but it was the two guests who complimented them so well that made the night for me. Pete Hullat (Standing in for Mick Smith who was off robbing trains again in Mexico) is a classic Oldies DJ, but when I say he has a collection of the big rare Oldies that would make anyone jealous, I'm not joking. Big record after big record, they just kept on coming. Top spot that man !
Kitch was the other guest DJ, and he played a blinder, especially his second spot. I don't know whether it's through his own choice, but Kitch, whilst having a sterling reputation as a collector, doesn't seem to DJ anywhere near often enough. So bear that in mind if you're a promoter looking for a quality DJ.
It certainly must have been a good night for Johnny Weston, he'd worn his little legs down to stumps, and just had to have a quiet snooze on the large flightcase by the Gents toilet. (Sorry about the quality of the picture, but it was taken using my phone). It wasn't a bad idea, until Melv realised that the flightcase was on wheels, and just launched John out into the 100 Club lying flat on his back on the flightcase.
It was almost the end of the night when this happened, and fortunately John managed to stay out of trouble until we ventured up onto Oxford Street at 7am, just in time to put our watches back to 6am. A lift was procured by John, and we arrived back at Marylebone in good time for the train home.
All told, it was another fabulous weekend, with lots of laughs with good friends, and most of all, some great Northern Soul !
What Does Seagull Taste Like ?
Posted by Dave Rimmer, 25 August 2008
It's really strange. I was in Worcester last night for the Marrs Bar 6th Anniversary allnighter, and there are seagulls all over the place in the town centre, and you're miles from the sea. Great big things ! At least as big as a chicken, so I was just wondering what they tasted like if you cooked one ?
Ah well, back to the night in question. Pete Robinson has been running the Marrs Bar allnighters for, fairly obviously as it was the sixth anniversary, six years now, and despite some ups and downs with the numbers, and changing from Saturdays to Bank Holiday Sundays, I've always enjoyed myself. This time was no different.
Arriving by train I wandered round the corner into The Postal Order pub, to find Swoz already ensconced at the bar, he'd been on the same train as me, but I hadn't noticed. We were soon joined by Jok and Pete for a couple, and then it was off to the club to set up.
Pete has a policy of allowing anyone who wants to DJ to have a go, and usually books three people for the first two hours, this time was no different and here's the line up for the night:
8 till 8.40 Jok
8.40 till 9.20 The Soul grocer Adam
9.20 till 10 Toby
10 till 11 Dave Rimmer
11 till 12 Kev Murphy
12 till 1 Des Parker
1 till 2 Eddie Hubbard
2 till 3 Neil Rushton
3 till 4 Sean Chapman
4 till 5 The Fez
5 till 6 Molly
I actually paid a fair bit of attention to what was being played last night, and was able to work out who was playing what, so here's a very quick rundown on the different spots.
Jok - A real nice mixture of uptempo R & B and hard driving Soul, nothing particularly rare, but the guy has got taste so played some great obscure things
Adam - Disco bunny ! Well, no, he only played one track which was out and out Disco, the rest were much like Jok's set. Classy Soul and R & B.
Toby - One or two tasty Detroit items got to grace the decks during Toby's spot, and I enjoyed it so much I let him carry on for an extra ten minutes.
Me - Pete's policy is that the resident DJs fit either end of the line up to allow the guests the main spots, great policy, and as I did the last spot at the last one, I was on early duties this time. Quite a few people had started to arrive by now, so it was a case of play some Oldies, and get them dancing. So that's what I did. Here's the playlist in roughly the right sort of order:
Edward Hamilton - I'm Gonna Love You - Carrie
The Fuller Brothers - Times A Wasting - Soul Clock
Cooperettes - Shing-A-Ling - Brunswick
Johnny Sayles - I Can't Get Enough - St Lawrence
Clarence Jackson - If It Don't Fit Don't Force It - Valtone
The Metros - Since I Found My Baby - RCA Victor
Joanne Courcy - I've Got The Power - Twirl
Valentinos - Sweeter Than The Day Before - Chess
Edwin Starr - Back Street - Ric-Tic
The Enchantments - I'm In Love With Your Daughter - Faro
Soul Brothers Six - Some Kind Of Wonderful - Atlantic
Jack Montgomery - My Dear Beloved - Scepter
Doni Burdick - Bari Track - Sound Impression
Darrow Fletcher - The Pain Gets A Little Deeper - Groovy
James Robbins - I Can't Please You - Mica
Ted Taylor - Somebody's Always Trying - Okeh
Betty O'Brien - She'll Be Gone - Liberty
Don Gardner - My Baby Loves To Boogaloo - Try-Glo-Town
The Five Royales - Catch That Teardrop - Home Of The Blues
Kev Murphy - Kev was actually on holiday, and quite handily was staying in Malvern, close enough to come and do a cracking set of big rare Oldies. Just love that Del-Tours.
Des Parker - Des can quite happily change his spot to suit the room, and although he did play one or two interesting unknowns (To me anyway), it was certainly a case of keeping the dancefloor happy this time
Eddie Hubbard - I've not heard Eddie DJ that often before, but am well aware of his reputation as a collector, and wasn't surprised to hear some top quality Sixties Northern Soul hitting the decks.
Neil Rushton - Despite his well earned reputation as a top Soulful House DJ, Neil proved that his Sixties collection is still pretty good, and although I didn't check, I'd guess that a fair few were on mint UK labels as well.
Sean Chapman - What can I say. I know he's spent a lot of money recently, and it showed. Rarity after rarity hit the decks in one of the best spots I've heard Sean play.
Pete Robinson - Tommy Cooper couldn't have played a spot like this, it was magic though !
Molly - Finishing the night off. I must admit I left halfway through Molly's spot to catch the first train home, but he was doing a very creditable job of keeping the dancefloor full when I left.
Overall, this time was more Oldies than the previous few, but as the crowd wanted to dance to Oldies, that's what they got. And it isn't a criticism of the DJs either (Let's face it, I played all Oldies), They were being asked to entertain the crowd, and that's what they did. Although numbers were down from the last one, this was the third allnighter in the country in three nights, plus several alldayers as well over the Bank Holiday weekend, so it was mainly a Midlands crowd. That said, there is always a sprinkling of travelers, and it was nice to see so many people enjoying themselves and creating a cracking atmosphere.
Lionel won the Fancy Dress prize (He wins it every time because there's only him that turns up in Fancy Dress !). This time he had managed to get hold of a Pimp suit. Black satin with pink leopard skin trimming, the big hat as well, and a cane ! What a star.
Tabs wins the 'Headbutt The Road' prize ! As I was leaving he was outside chatting and went to lean on a car behind him that wasn't actually there. Over he went, headbutted the road, and picked himself up muttering. Sorry mate I shouldn't laugh, but I'm going to, again, it was funny though !
Happily trains run to a normal schedule on Bank Holiday Mondays, so I was able to get the six o'clock train, and be home before eight, another good night over and the next one to look forward to on Boxing day.